Wed. Feb. 5, 2014: Ideas Come From Everything

Wednesday, February 5, 2014
Waxing Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Snowy and cold

Update on all the teeny little plants we’ve got going here, over on Gratitude and Growth.

Worked yesterday, pitching jobs, working with students, etc. Did the week’s work for my Environmental Law and Policy class. Totally love that class.

Worked on the play — still not happy with it.

Finished reading Jake Arnott’s THE HOUSE OF RUMOURS. I liked it, especially structurally, although some of the chapters felt as though they meandered a bit too much before all tying back together. It was an interesting conceit, though. I’ve played with the idea of structuring something along the Major Arcana, but haven’t found what works for me, yet. I think I’d approach it differently, so it was interesting to read this approach.

Started another book, a thriller by a well-known author, and it just didn’t work for me. So I put it down. I’ve hit the point where I only push through on a book that doesn’t engage me if I’m paid to read and review it.

Played with some characters and ideas. Would like to do another serial, but not sure which outlet I’d pitch to. I’m not interested in one of the sites where you only get paid if you get enough votes. This is my business, not my hobby. I get paid for the WORK, not a popularity contest.

One story idea came because of a job pitch. I made the first cut (it’s a very, very competitively sought position and I’m the “out there” choice), and if I get it, I’d have to spend a certain amount of time each month out of town. That could align with another project in which one of my former professors wants me to work with him on, in the same area. I was idly looking at shares in the area (it’s too far to commute, and doesn’t make sense to stay in a hotel), and found a dream share — not that I could contact them until the details on the job were finalized. The photos and the tone of the ad gave me an idea for a story. So, you see, ideas are everywhere, and even if these projects don’t work out as jobs, they’ve served a purpose!

Plenty to do today. The snowstorm is worse than predicted; not sure I can get my mom to her doctor’s appointment this afternoon. I’m getting sick of shoveling — ready to hibernate and come out when it all melts!

Making some decisions on some changes I want to make, both personally and professionally. Feels good.

A-writing we will go!

Devon

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Mon. Feb. 3, 2014: Snowing and Starting

Monday, February 3, 2014
Waxing Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Snowy and cold

I’ve got an article up on how to get out of a blogging rut over on Learn To Blog. Stop by, drop a comment, maybe they’ll ask me back!

Busy weekend. Flat out on Friday, along with celebration of the Chinese Lunar New Year. Felt great to get into the Year of the Horse.

Saturday was all about Imbolc, cooking, and launching two new blogs. I cooked for twelve hours, and you can see the details in my new blog on cooking, Comfort and Contradiction: Food as Muse. I also have an introductory post over on Adventures in Vineland.

Recently, I re-read Beverly Nichols’s book, MERRY HALL, a “creative nonfiction” — or maybe it’s fiction based in some fact — about buying his home and starting to revive the garden right after WWII. This weekend, I read the other two books in the trilogy, LAUGHTER ON THE STAIRS and SUNLIGHT ON THE LAWN. While there’s a funny, rather arch Noel Coward-esque tone to the books, he’s downright mean sometimes, and very condescending towards women, which I didn’t like. There’s some wonderful garden and house information, and he writes warmly and well about cats, but I finished the trilogy with mixed feelings.

Did some work on the play, but, for the most part, other than the new blogs, I gave myself a break from writing. I need to dig back in today, revising the novella and finishing a book proposal I want to send out tomorrow.

I will miss the year-long student who finished her work on the 31st. She was outstanding, and I’m looking forward to cheering her on during a long and productive writing career. I’ve still got my terrific editing intensive students, but this year, I really need — and want — to cut back on teaching. My focus needs to be elsewhere for the coming months, and I have to be very careful where I spread that energy when it comes to teaching.

Caught up on my Environmental Law and Policy class, wrote and submitted my paper. Still have two other classes to catch up on and then get going on this week’s assignments. I LOVE the law class — really terrific.

Got an interesting bite from a gig I’d pitched, not thinking in a million years they’d be interested — but they are. It’s the other side of the table from where I usually sit on this issue, so it would be an interesting challenge.

It’s snowing, and I have books due that can’t be renewed anymore, so, as soon as the library opens, I will pop down and take care of it, then stop by the post office to get a few things out.

And then, it’s all about digging in for the new week.

Devon